Today, I’m excited to welcome Stephen Zimmer to Bookwraiths.  He has been nice enough to make a place for us on his Depths of Night Blog Tour, and I for one can’t wait to read what he has written for us!

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There are a lot of reasons as to why I find fantasy to be a valuable genre within the world of literature.  All too often, I find that it does not get the respect that it deserves in academic settings, though this is changing gradually as more works of fantasy are explored within literature programs and dedicated classes in high schools, colleges, and universities.

I always invite readers of other genres to take a few of these reasons into consideration for taking their first steps into the fantastical worlds that I have enjoyed since my mother first read to me The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings trilogy at the age of seven.

Fantasy and related speculative fiction genres have the potential of making things come alive for readers that none of them have ever experienced before with their five senses.  In my opinion, this engages the imagination to the fullest extent.  The things that are seen as being impossible in our world suddenly become completely possible in the mind of the reader.

Our moral imaginations are also engaged in a strong, vivid way in works of fantasy literature.  Sweeping contrasts in settings illustrate greater moral principles.  Dystopian, hellish realms serve as warnings of what could happen if an immoral path is embraced. Healthy, vibrant ones serve as representations of what most of us desire in terms of the moral codes reflected within.  The stark contrasts between Mordor and the Shire leave a clear and unambiguous impression upon the reader that ultimately acts as a call to seek and follow a higher moral code.

Fantasy literature also has a fundamental appeal to the primordial, creative tendencies that exist within all human beings.  The building of entire new worlds, societies, creatures, races, and so much more that is part of the essential fabric of fantasy fiction reflects the inner drive within humans to build and create.

The ability to represent themes that would be harder to address more directly in other genres is also a major strength that fantasy literature enjoys.  Issues that become contentious very quickly in open conversation, such as race relations, or matters of religion and science, war and politics, and so much more can be addressed skillfully in fantasy using various races, creatures, magic, and many more tools that the speculative fiction writer can make use of.  Points of view can be expressed and explored in such a way that will not turn away readers, as ultimately a work of fiction can be enjoyed purely as entertainment

When it comes to entertainment, fantasy can excel as a means of escape from a gadget-flooded, tech-dependent world.  It takes the reader away to a simpler mode of existence that does not have all of the pressures, hassles, rules and regulations, and complexity of modern society.  Magic and nature come to the fore within fantasy literature in an elemental way that frees the reader of the worries of the present.

These are just a few solid examples of the reasons why fantasy is a highly-compelling, valuable literary genre.  From exacting the highest power of our imagination, to inspiring better moral development, to reaching out to some of our most primal creative urges, to enabling exploration and understanding of sensitive issues, to offering outlets of pure escape, fantasy is a very powerful genre that has a lot to offer the readers of today and tomorrow!

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Stephen Zimmer is an award-winning author and filmmaker based out of Lexington Kentucky. His works include the Rayden Valkyrie novels (Sword and Sorcery), the Rising Dawn Saga (Cross Genre), the Fires in Eden Series (Epic Fantasy), the Hellscapes short story collections (Horror), the Chronicles of Ave short story collections (Fantasy), the Harvey and Solomon Tales (Steampunk), and the forthcoming Faraway Saga (YA Dystopian/Cross-Genre).

Stephen’s visual work includes the feature film Shadows Light, shorts films such as The Sirens and Swordbearer, and the forthcoming Rayden Valkyrie: Saga of a Lionheart TV Pilot.

Stephen is a proud Kentucky Colonel who also enjoys the realms of music, martial arts, good bourbons, and spending time with family.


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Tour Schedule and Activities

5/21     Beauty-in-Ruins  Guest Post

5/21     Literary Underworld  Guest Post

5/22     Sapphyria’s Books  Review

5/22     The Horror Club  Review

5/23     Oak Hill RPG Club  Review

5/23     Breakeven Books  Interview

5/23     Bookwraiths  Guest Post

5/24     MyLifeMyBooksMyEscape  Author Interview

5/24     Ally Books and Reviews  Guest Post

5/25     Sheila’s Guests and Reviews  Author Interview & Guest Post

5/25     The Book Lover’s Boudoir  Review

5/26     I Smell Sheep  VLOG

5/27     MightyThorJRS Fantasy Book News and Reviews  Guest Post

5/27     Jazzy Book Reviews  Top 10 List

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Purchase the book at Amazon

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